Articles Posted in Estate Planning

If you are a parent with a special needs trust, you likely understand how critical it is to prepare for the future. After all, these trusts make sure that a child continues to receive financial support in case you die or become incapacitated. These trusts are also particularly helpful because directly transferring assets to a special needs child outside of a trust can result in the discontinuation of government benefits.

Deciding the amount of funds to place in a trust, however, can be difficult. That’s why this article reviews some of the important details you should consider when funding a special needs trust.

# 1 – Housing Costs

When Aretha Franklin passed away in 2018, she was not believed to have had any type of estate plan. Months after her death, however, several handwritten wills were located in the late singer’s home.

While some people think that handwritten wills are never valid, this is simply not true. Instead, handwritten wills play a unique role in the estate planning process.

This article takes a look at the role that handwritten documents can play in the estate planning process as well as the limited situations in which these documents are allowed.

Many people fail to engage in any type of estate planning. Statistics compiled by AARP suggests that approximately 60% of Americans lack a will or any type of estate planning.

Of the people who do decide to create plans for what happens in case they die or become incapacitated, many rely on only a will to determine how their assets will be divided.

In many cases, however, people benefit from the creation from other estate planning tools including trust, which have the potential to serve a number of unique purposes.

As time passes, an increasing number of people are finding out that they have digital assets as part of their estate plan. No matter if it’s audible content, digital documents, or social media page, however, it is often critical to appoint someone who can properly look over these assets in case something happens to you.

As a result, this article reviews some of the important steps that you should follow when selecting a person who will manage your digital assets.

# 1 – Understand the Importance of an Asset Guardian

The Indiana Supreme Court recently upheld the removal of a father as the administrator of his deceased son’s estate. The son was killed in an accident in July 2007 when the vehicle that he was traveling in was struck by a bus.

The man’s surviving daughter was subsequently placed under the guardianship of her aunt. Several days after the accident, the deceased man’s father petitioned the state’s Superior Court to appoint him as a special administrator of his son’s estate for pursuing wrongful death compensation.

One day after petitioning for an appointment, the mother of the the deceased man’s other child petitioned for appointment as special administrator and her petition was also granted, which led to the woman commencing a wrongful death action in Marion County.

Each year, thousands of Americans rely on assisted reproductive technology to have children. While this advancement in the medical industry has allowed people who would have otherwise been unable to have children do so, it is not without its complications.

One of the frequently overlooked areas impacted by artificial reproductive technology is estate planning. This article takes a brief look at the role of assisted reproductive technology and how it impacts end of life decisions.

# 1 – Artificial Reproductive Technology Is Playing a Powerful Role

The Portland Museum of Art in Maine recently initiated legal action against the caretaker of an art collector. The Museum claimed that the caretaker bequeathed as much as $2 million to museum, but was convinced to not do so before her death.

As a result, the art collector changed her will months before death in 2015 and removed the Portland Museum of Art as a primary beneficiary. In legal briefs filed in preparation of the case, the museum alleged that caretaker displayed characteristic signs of elder abuse and kept the art collector from interacting with her family.

Unfortunately, there are a number of cases where one person manipulates another individual who is in a vulnerable position to an illness or an advanced age. This manipulation is often done to defraud the individual and take their money.

We love our pets, but many of us are still uncomfortable with confronting end of life issues. When accidents occur and people lack essential estate planning tools, it is very common for pets to being end up being sent to shelters or rescue centers.

To avoid this unpleasant idea and to make sure that a pet is cared for following a person’s death or incapacity, some people establish a “pet trust”. Being a relatively uncommon type of estate planning tool, however, people often have questions about just what these trusts include.

As a result, this article discusses six important things that you should know about pet trusts.

Many people understand that estate planning is important, but nobody wants to tackle issues that address end of life because often that means accepting that you too will die.

If you get nervous or uncomfortable when it comes to estate planning issues, you aren’t the only one. Failure to address estate planning issues, however, can lead to a number of complications if you are suddenly pass away or become incapacitated.

As a result, it is critical to make sure you perform adequate estate planning. This article offers some advice about tackling the various emotional challenges that are frequently involved with estate planning.

Regardless of age, for parents who are interested in estate planning, the most pressing issue is almost always caring for children. The expectations that a parent has for their child often end up shaping the estate plans that get written.

For single parents, these conversations are often more critical. Instead of leaving behind a spouse who will be able to make sure that the child or children is cared for, the death of a single parent has the potential to result in many more obstacles being suddenly created for a child.

Because the Census Bureau reports that there are 13.6 million single parents in the United States, this article reviews some of the estate planning documents that can be particularly helpful for adults in this situation.

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